Linking the Indigenous Sami People with Regional Development in Sweden

image of Linking the Indigenous Sami People with Regional Development in Sweden

The Sami have lived for time immemorial in an area that today extends across the Kola Peninsula in Russia, northern Finland, northern Norway's coast and inland, and the northern half of Sweden. The Sami play an important role in these northern economies thanks to their use of land, their involvement in reindeer husbandry, agriculture/farming and food production, and connection with the region’s tourism industry. However, in Sweden, as in the other states where the Sami live, the connections with regional development are often inconsistent and weak, and could do more to support the preservation and promotion of Sami culture and create new employment and business opportunities. This study, together with the OECD’s broader thematic work on this topic, provides actionable recommendations on how to better include the Sami and other Indigenous Peoples in regional development strategies, learning from and incorporating their own perspectives on sustainable development in the process.



Sami economy, livelihoods and well-being

This chapter presents a diagnosis of the Sami economy, livelihoods and well-being within the context of the broader northern regional economy in Sweden. It explores Sami community and identity in relation to national legislation; describes the Sami economy; discusses the importance of well-being in understanding Sami community and economic development; and offers recommendations on how to improve data on Sami economic activities, socio-economic outcomes and land use, including the importance of Indigenous data sovereignty.


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